CLASS OF 1966 | 2018 | ISSUE 2

Bill Dietz writes: “Hardy Spoehr is a class treasure. Many of you already know that, but I did not appreciate what a treasure he is until we had a lengthy visit with him and Joyce in Hawai’i. Nancy and I were on Maui in late December for the wedding of our son’s best friend since second grade, and moved from Maui to Oahu for an additional vacation. We had gotten in touch with Hardy to arrange a visit, and he became our tour guide for the island of Oahu.

“His immersion in Hawai’i and its history is extraordinary, fed in part by his parents’ interests and engagement with the island. His father was an anthropologist who studied in Micronesia, so Hardy and his sister lived in Saipan and the South Pacific as children. His father became the director of the Bishop Museum (1953), a fabulous museum located on the original grounds of the Kamehameha School. The museum is dedicated to the history of Hawai’i, and his mother developed a chart of the genealogy of the Kamehameha royal family that is on display at the museum as well as at Queen Emma Summer Palace. Hardy was an early advocate of the need to focus on the health of native Hawaiians. For 25 years he was involved with Papa Ola Lōkahi, the Native Hawaiian Health Board, established by the native Hawaiian community and chartered by the federal government to oversee planning, training, and educational initiatives focusing on improving the national health and wellbeing of native Hawaiians.I was fortunate to have lunch with several of his successors—their respect and admiration for Hardy was palpable.He was also the executive assistant to the Kaho’alawe Island Conveyance Commission, asking for the return to Hawai’i of this island near Maui that was used as a weapons range until 1990.

“Here are a few other insights (among many provided by Hardy) from our visit. Hardy’s piping comes from a long history of English engagement with Hawai’i. Piping grew out of the interaction of Scots with the Hawaiian Islands, and Hardy has written a detailed history of piping (Upoho Uka Nui O Kekokia — Scotland’s Great Highland Bagpipe). As he points out in his book, Hawai’i’s first national anthem was God Save the King, and Hawai’i Alohais set to the tune of a traditional Scottish hymn. The Hawaiian flag has a Union Jack in the upper left corner, and eight red, white, and blue stripes representing the eight major Hawaiian Islands. Hawai’i still has a number of bagpipe bands, and Hardy is a long-standing member of Celtic Pipes and Drums of Hawai’i. He can be spotted in several of the band’s scrapbook photos. Consistent with the Hawai’i-Scotland connection, the pipe bands and others celebrate Robbie Burns’ birthday. Check out the tune written for his father—Alika Spoehr Hulaby Ka’upenaWong and performed on Burns Night 2018. Hardy was master of ceremonies that evening. Exceptional.”

After a distinguished career of 40 years, Daniel Lang has retired from the University of Toronto where he served “variously” as vice-provost, vice-president, and professor of economics. Well, not really. Shortly after retirement, Dan writes, “the president asked me to stay on as senior policy advisor on a part-time basis, which I continued until his term ended a year or so ago. If anyone is wondering what being a senior policy advisor entails, the serious answer is to sit in the back of the room and listen. The less serious, but also truthful answer, is to sit on committees and attend meetings that the president, for whatever reason, wants to avoid.

“Next, in a new and politically inscrutable twist, the minister of colleges and universities asked me take on a job planning and setting up a budget for a new provincial Francophone university.We are heading into the final lap, after which I can hand this over to a real Francophone. I still serve on the boards of governors of a polytechnic college and Roman Catholic seminary, both a very interesting relief from the pressures of a large international research university. Although, for intrigue, the seminary beats them all.

“I still teach a graduate course in public economics, and supervise a few graduate students, mainly because they are smart, and their research topics are interesting. When ambition gets the upper hand, I publish a paper or two, most recently on the economics of human capital in Mongolia as it shifts from a Soviet model of education to a Western market model. I am not sure the shift was the better choice.

Diane MA’70 and I spend a lot of time playing bridge and tennis and walking the dog. I am in the later stages of my bridge-playing learner’s permit, but she is sharp as a tack. We have a big eco garden with lots of fruit trees, vegetables, and plants that make bees and birds happy. Diane is the gardener-in-chief and fearless foe of any squirrel or rabbit that dares to trespass. I provide the stoop labor.

“Our kids surprised us. Kate, who was insistent that she would go to college only in Canada, refused to attend any school other than the UofT, which she did. Now she works at Mount Holyoke and recently earned a master’s from Wesleyan. Tim, who wanted nothing to do with a Canadian school, went to Swarthmore, but later got an M.Eng and PhD from the UofT, where now as a sustainable energy engineer. Go figure! Like cats, they always end-up on their feet.

“After taking three long trips into the Arctic in Canada and Greenland, last September we headed for Canada’s west coast. We spent a few days in Vancouver, walking, biking, and taking water taxis to get around. For a North American metropolis, Vancouver is remarkably easy to navigate without setting bum in a four-wheeled vehicle. From there we flew north to Prince Rupert, and next took an all-day ferry to Haida Gwaii, where we stayed in a Haida wilderness lodge in a place called Tlell (population 180) on the northeast coast of Graham Island. The Tlell River was 40 feet out the front door. Fifty yards out the backdoor was the Hecate Strait, which separates Haida Gwaii from the mainland. Haida Gwaii, until recently, was called the Queen Charlotte Islands. It was renamed as part of a reconciliation agreement between the government and the Haida people. The islands, many of which are uninhabited and protected as land and marine preserves, are a temperate rain forest. After a series of protests, unchecked logging of the ‘old growth’ forests came to a stop. The forests and coastal waters were then placed in the hands of the Haida people. We hiked in the forests and along the beaches, and took a Zodiac boat to one of the smaller islands with a Haida ‘watchman’ to visit a deserted village. On the way back our guides, who like most people in Haida Gwaii hold multiple jobs, stopped and recruited us to give them a hand emptying their crab traps. The entire Haida Gwaii experience was like entering a new, different, and endlessly fascinating world. For this spring, we are planning a hike along the Camino de Santiago de Compestela.”

Alberto Ibarguen ’66

Well-deserved accolades. Robert Barlow is being “honored for his 12 years of service with the naming of the Free Clinic of Central Virginia’s lobby.” David Griffith alerted me that Alberto Ibarguen “was recently made a member of The Order of Isabella the Catholic by order of the King of Spain.” I reached out to Alberto who writes: “Not sure what to tell you about it, except it’s true. I was honored to receive it. It’s right up there with an honorary doctorate from Wesleyan and election to membership in the American Academy of Arts and Sciences (see photo of me signing the ledger first signed to AAAS founder, John Adams).

“I’m lucky and privileged to be healthy and active at the head of Knight Foundation, where we’ve helped Detroit come out of bankruptcy, Philadelphia reimagine many of its public/civic spaces, and Miami become a center for the arts. I’m proudest of having imagined and helped fund and organize the Knight First Amendment Institute at Columbia University, about which you’ll hear more as the laws of free expression on Internet get litigated.

“The foundation was also an early supporter of Wesleyan professor Erika Franklin Fowler’s research into negative campaign advertising. When we started, we had no idea how big a topic this would become until recent elections shenanigans. We’re now one of the foundations supporting teams of independent scholars looking at the 2016 election data. It’s the first-time Facebook has allowed their proprietary data to be examined by outsiders.

“Again, I feel privileged to be able to do this work, and lucky that Susana and I are headed for our 50th anniversary, our son, Diego ’97, is a Wesleyan alumnus and First Amendment Counsel at Hearst, we love our daughter-in-law and have three amazing grandkids. Life has been good.”

David Griffith also takes us back to the Wesleyan team that in 1963 set a New England record for the 400-yard freestyle relay, writing: “Van Kennen was the lead off swimmer . . . and gave us such an enormous advantage that all we had to do was put in a creditable performance to win it. I don’t recall if it was Clark Byam or Thos Hawley in second or third, but I anchored.Dietz was the alternate.” David gives this glimpse of one of our class’s greatest athletes: “VK won the 50-yard freestyle NCAA finals in 1966 . . . an event for swimmers from all schools . . . Yale, Stanford, UCLA, Wisconsin, Indiana . . . VK beat ’em all . . . it was at the Air Force Academy. VK then went up to our family mountain cabin in Alma, and from there he hitchhiked with his skis and boots up to Vail for some serious alpine skiing.”

The day after David’s note, I received one from that very Clark Byam, who lives in Pasadena but often visits Austin, having a daughter there and one in San Antonio. Clark, who as David points out is a “very highly accomplished [lawyer], really,” is “still working at the same law firm, now for 46 years in September, but have cut back on my hours.” He will “be fishing in Alaska in June for a few days and then my wife and I will be in British Columbia for couple of weeks in July.”

Jeff Nilson writes, with characteristic wit, that he is “still taking nourishment and dressing himself,” planting herb seeds, “pray[ing] that they might germinate to Saint Fiacre, the patron saint of gardens,” celebrating with his wife, Marietta, their daughter, Margaret’s, defeat of breast cancer, and taking great pleasure in their grandsons, Isaac (14) and William (11).

Robert Dearth and his wife, Barbara, are celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary this June while keeping up with their grandson, Sebastian, who is visiting colleges this summer. Bob “attended my graduate school’s 50th reunion (Darden Graduate School of Business, University of Virginia). It was a hoot.”

Bill Dietz calls our attention to Willie Kerr’s eloquent description of Bob Rosenbaum quoted in Bob’s obituary (Wesleyan, Issue 1 2018): “His stability in unsteady times, his disinterestedness in factional times, his clarity of vision in beclouded times, his grace in ungracious times helped bring Wesleyan through, not just intact, but enhanced.” Wise words in our unsteady time.

Our 50th Reunion was such a success that a number of our classmates, led by Rick Crootof, thought of getting together for mini-reunions, a chance to catch up while cheering on those celebrating their 50th. As the Class of 1967 gathered in May of last year, I joined Rick, Dave McNally, John Neff, Will Rhys, and Sandy Van Kennenin the celebration. Rick, Dave, Will, and Sandy, joined by Frank Burrows, attended this year’s Reunion, a good time being had by all as you can see from these photographs taken by Rick. Our class seems to be the only one with a significant presence in non-Reunion years. Please think—Hardy Spoehr is—of attending the 50th Reunion of the Wesleyan Class of 1969 and the mini-reunion—we hope a perennial event—of the Class of 1966 in May of 2019. (Photos below by Rick Crootof)

Larry Carver |

P.O. Box 103, Rico, Colorado, 81332 | 512/478-8968

CLASS OF 1966 | 2018 | ISSUE 1

The following message appears on Madison, Wisc., buses: “People of Meskonsing,/ Who rides with you?/ Saygo! (Greetings in good health!).” The author is our own Claude “Bud” Smith, one of a handful of Wisconsin writers selected for this Art En Route Project. Bud explains: “My words (unreadable, alas, in the attached photo) contain a message for our classmates…Meskonsing is the English spelling of the French version of a Miami Indian name for Wisconsin. Substitute ‘Wesleyan’ and you get the point. Ring the bells of old South College!”

How good is that! Well, almost as good as the life Bud, Elaine, his wife of 41 years, and their two sons are living in Madison, where Bud writes: “We take advantage of all things Madison and all things UW, and volunteer a lot for Wisconsin Public Television. I do not have a smartphone, but can now text on my flip phone, a miracle on the order of the loaves and the fishes. I play in senior softball and golf leagues, fish the state lakes and streams, and am a member of a terrific book club. My writing and publishing continue apace, and I am helping a number of former students get their books published. My reminiscence, “Touching Genius,” appeared in John Updike Remembered (2017), and I gave a reading downtown in December.”

I mentioned wrestling with retirement in my request of class notes, and David Luft responded: “Let me know if you figure out how to do retirement. We could do this as a theme for the class notes. Oddly enough, I’m around the same age you are. I think I will retire in the next year, and it’s hard to imagine my life without teaching and regular obligations.” David, who holdsthe Horning Endowed Chair of Humanities at Oregon State University, just sent his latest book, The Austrian Tradition in German Intellectual History 1740-1938/1939 to Cambridge University Press. “One of the things I think about doing with my retirement is writing other kinds of books.”

Essel Bailey, too, is thinking of retirement. He and his wife, Menakka, “just returned from Australia and Sri Lanka visiting family. And are trying to get to that retirement state sometime this year. Traveling to our farm in Calistoga though in a few weeks.”

No retirement, however, for Alexander “Sandy” Blount. Professor of Clinical Psychology, Antioch University New England, and Professor of Family Medicine and Psychiatry

University of Massachusetts Medical School, Sandy writes: “I am living in Amherst and have since the 1970s. Still married to Francesca Maltese (45 years this summer). She is retired, but I seem to be ramping up. I am teaching doctoral students in clinical psychology with a focus on health psychology and the integration of behavioral health into medical settings. I have a project to develop the workforce of people trained to do behavioral health work in primary care settings for the State of New Hampshire and I am working on a book tentatively entitled Patient Centered Team-Based Primary Care: The Leap from Good to Great. Let me know if you get that retirement thing figured out. For the time being, I seem to be fleeing it as fast as possible.”

Enough of retirement, well, not quite. Thomas Hawley, a California neighbor as it turns out of Essel’s, is “now retired” and with “my Dutch wife, Marijke, living on the banks of the Carmel River, growing grapes, making wine labeled ‘Blue Heron’ (called uncharitably by some “Dead Heron”), and painting sea and landscapes.” Thomas and James “Sandy” Van Kennen, you may remember, swam on the Wesleyan team that in 1963 set a New England record for the 400-yard freestyle relay. Thomas, suffering from “the cold and lack of female companionship,” transferred after his freshman year to Stanford where he stayed “for law school, spending summers managing Dave Packard’s apricot orchard. The major law firms did not exactly beat a path to my door after law school, and I ended up with only two offers: one from Anchorage, Alaska, and one from Monterey, California. Needless to say, I chose the latter and after three years at the Monterey firm, opened up a small private practice specializing in estate planning in Carmel, Calif. I authored the Artful Dodger’s Guide to Planning Your Estate, which met with very modest success.” Wonderful to catch up with Thomas, and he is “hoping to reconnect with some of the fine fellows I met at Wesleyan.”

Let me end with a tribute to resilience and good humor, both of which Will Rhys and his wife, Nancy, possess in abundance. Last year their house in Bridgton, Maine, “was destroyed in a fire caused by a lightning strike.” In the depth of last December’s bitter cold, Will wrote: “Hope your temperature gauge is not doing a nose dive like it is here. We have snow, but it is too freakin’ cold to get out and enjoy it. Hoping that we get a bit of a warm up next week…warmer than single digits. Nancy and I would also like to see a bit of a warm up so that our builders can proceed with the construction of our new house in a timely fashion…Guys working on House 2.0 are truly brave souls to be working through these winter days.Not ready to pack up and scurry off to Hawaii, although sharing a beverage with Hardy would not be thought amiss.” Best of fortune to Will and Nancy.

Larry Carver |

P.O. Box 103, Rico, Colorado, 81332 | 512/478-8968

CLASS OF 1966 | 2017 | ISSUE 3

Who knew? I didn’t. Warren K.K. Luke, a freshman Foss Hill hallmate, did not graduate with our class. Warren transferred at the end of his sophomore year, taking a degree from Babson College then going on to the Harvard Graduate School of Business for an MBA and to a distinguished career in business and public service. A few highlights:  Warren, currently chairman, and chief executive officer of the Hawaii National Bank and chairman emeritus of Pacific Basin Economic Council, served as a director of the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco for nine years. He is a member of the Board of Trustees of Punahou School where he keeps up his friendship with fellow Punahou graduate, Hardy Spoehr. Warren, you will always be one of us.

Talked with Warren’s freshman roommate, George Churchill, enjoying many a good laugh, his sense of humor keen as ever. George is, however, suffering from esophageal cancer, but says the treatment is going well and that he has great support from his husband, three children, two of whom, Elizabeth and Johnathan, graduated from Wesleyan, and eight grandchildren. Think good thoughts for George.

Three more academics from our class have been in touch. Robert Barlow, who now lives in Lynchburg, Va., served for 30 years as a dean, first at the University of Hartford and then at Sweetbriar College. Bob writes: “I also worked for seven years in the Job Corps program as an executive director and regional director. I concluded my work career in 2014 after 12 years as executive director of the Free (Medical) Clinic of Central Virginia.”

In his 45 years at Oberlin College, Samuel Carrier “taught perception and cognition…served as an associate dean, director of planning and research, and provost.” He has worked with his wife, a classical archaeologist, on projects in the Abruzzo, Italy, ( and Cyrene, Libya (” Right after retirement, Sam “was felled by a stroke while presenting a paper at the Archaeological Society of America.” The good news: Sam is recovering well, reading three books a week, living in an 1876 house purchased in 1980s, and collaborating with his wife on a paper. With the support of a $200,000 State Department grant, Sam is still active in Libya, “mostly in workshops in Tunis.”

Grant Holly, a professor of English at Hobart and William Smith Colleges, is writing a screenplay and plans to teach for two more years.  I called Grant to catch up, but also to get his remembrance of his good friend and our classmate, Robert Killheffer, who died on October 2, 2016. “A consummate book man,” Grant said. This passion for books, particularly rare books and first editions, propelled Bob to 35-year career as a librarian at Yale University.

On a happier note, Harold Potter writes: “I have had…a wonderful life thanks primarily to five things, my family, my friends, Wesleyan University, the U.S. Army, and consistently good health.” His rich and joyful life continues with Lee Vandenberg, his wife of 48 years, three children, a grandson, great, long lasting friendships (among them Bill Machen, Rob Chickering, Joe Pickard, and Don Craven, who like the Potters, lives in Wellesley) travel, skiing, and golf. Harold served in the army from 1966 to 1968, going on to practice law with Holland & Knight and its predecessor for 41 years, retiring in 2015.

For Robert Rockwall retirement is also “going well…Monette and I still enjoy hiking and some biking, and fly fishing is even more relaxing than ever. And the grandchildren are endless fun to watch grow up.  Until recently I was on the Boards of the Economic Development entities here in York and Lancaster, Pennsylvania, and the Board of a low income, elderly housing organization, a good grounding experience.”

I was delighted to reconnect with Clifford Shedd and Joel Russ.  Cliff, who retired, “reluctantly,” in 2015 after “50 years in the financial end of the energy business…worked for a couple of big banks and corporate entities, including six fascinating years at Enron.” He also served as “the CFO of two smaller public companies and was a principal in two startups. The most recent of these was an energy-related manufacturing company founded in 1985, which grew to have 35 employees and enjoyed a lot of success, until we had to close it down during 2015 due to the slump in the oil & gas business.” “As much fun as my corporate career was,” Cliff writes, “my real joy in life has been my 33-year marriage to my wife, Michelle, an artist, and trying to keep up with my four sons. We have a second home in Monterey, Calif., an area we love. We enjoy the outdoors and travelling, so far to about 35 countries.”  Cliff’s closest Wesleyan friend over the years has been his “roommate and Eclectic brother, Gary Conger. “Michelle and I make an annual trip to New York and always time it to make sure that we will see Gary and his wife, Nell.” If Cliff and his wife get to New York this October, they will be able to take in Gary’s first solo gallery show, Magical Manhattan, 485 Madison Avenue (North).

“Following graduation from Wesleyan,” Joel, like Harold Potter, volunteered for the U.S. Army and served as a military intelligence officer for four and half years, learned Thai at the Foreign Service Institute in Washington, D.C., and spent two and half years in Thailand.”

Joel “returned to Maine, graduated from law school,” finding his passion, not in law, but in leading community-based nonprofit organizations and private foundations, hoping to improve the quality of life for the people in the state I love. Married for 49 years, my wife Carolyn (a retired public school teacher) and I have two sons and three grandchildren.  Still consulting for community-based nonprofits.” As I wrote to Joel, it doesn’t get much better.

Larry Carver |

P.O. Box 103, Rico, Colorado, 81332 | 512/478-8968

CLASS OF 1966 | 2017 | ISSUE 2

Cover of a new book by Gene Bunnell ’66

Congratulations to Gene Bunnell, professor emeritus, Department of Geography and Planning, University of Albany, on the publication of his new book, Transforming Providence: Rebirth of a Post-Industrial City, the subject being of pressing importance as we confront our nation’s decaying cities. Gene, who “studied for my PhD at London School of Economics and Political Science,” and his wife, Lynne, will “celebrate their 50th wedding anniversary later this summer by traveling to Scotland.”

A number of our classmates followed Gene into the academy, doing so with distinction.  David Luft, professor of history at Oregon State University and author of numerous books, tells me he will send a fuller update once he has finished his latest book, The Austrian Tradition in German Intellectual History: 1740-1938/1939. For 39 years James Russell, also a professor of history, taught at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, where he served as chair of the department before retiring in 2009. He and his wife now live in Worcester, Mass. He added, “I still like to give lectures in the community on American history topics.”

Phillip Shaver ’66

John Lapp, having “left Wesleyan to marry Linda Conner and pursue a PhD in economics at Princeton,” took “an assistant professorship at North Carolina State University,” where he focused on “monetary economics and financial markets,” being “equally drawn to research and publishing, teaching and curriculum, and various aspects of administration.” He writes that it “all worked out well enough.” I’ll say. John retired in 2011 as the Alumni Distinguished Professor of Economics. Professor of Psychology, Phillip Shaver, who retired from the University of California, Davis, in 2015, received this past September an “honorary doctorate in the social sciences from Stockholm University in Sweden. The award ceremony, formal dinner, and after dinner dance were held in the Stockholm City Hall, where Nobel Prizes are awarded. My wife, Gail, is receiving a similar honorary doctorate this September from the University of Oslo in Norway, where the Nobel Peace Prize is awarded.””

We have professors, we have adventurers. Peter Monro, naturalist, newspaperman, and landscape architect, writes: “Although I was unfortunately unable to attend our 50th Reunion, its downstream plume brought me (and Jill) three mini-reunions here in Maine, with fellow Betas Jim Brink and Gene Bunnell and their wives. While the 50th Reunion was taking place, I was volunteering as an hospitalero, co-managing a refugee [camp] on the Camino de Santiago de Compostella pilgrimage route.  I had just completed that trek as my personal challenge at 71. Learning to unicycle was my 70th birthday challenge.”

Peter Spiller, now living on Anastasia Island, chairs the Board of Directors of the St Augustine Lighthouse and Maritime Museum, a Smithsonian Affiliate.  This past April, he and his wife, Debbie, “took a repositioning cruise from Fort Lauderdale to Rome followed by slowly wandering through that city plus Florence and Venice.”  In August Peter took his “annual canoe expedition…from Sioux Lookout, Ontario, to and down the Albany River, fly[ing] out 22 days later from First Nation settlement Eabametoong.”

I I envy the Peters, and meanwhile, Richard John Rohfritch writes: “Larry, I’m jealous!   For several years, my wife, Marta, and I have wanted to retire in Durango—just down the road from you.” Richard, who “retired after 45 years of working for big chemical companies” in Houston, has “become literary after writing business emails for so long—I’ve starting collecting and reading poetry, and I am compiling a bibliography of Donald Hall’s writings…I took freshman English from Richard Wilbur at Wes in 1967, but it took me about 50 years to get back to poetry.”

Frank Burrows and wife, Carol, have retired, living with beloved dog, Mandy, in Boynton Beach, Fla. They plan to escape the heat this year, renting a water front cabin in Maine with thoughts of kayaking. Great note from Robert Dearth, who “continues to work with the Chi Psi Fraternity chapter at Miami University…in Oxford, Ohio, as an alumni advisor and officer of the Lodge Property management organization. I also facilitate the alcohol awareness and anti-hazing annual undergraduate educational program mandatory for all new brothers of the Lodge.” Our inspirational leader, Robert Crootof writes: “After 40 years in our 300-year-old house in Norwich, Conn., we sold it (finally) in March, and will now divide our time between Wolfeboro, N.H., and Sarasota, Fla., with travel to visit children in Manhattan, Bozeman, and LA. We had many tears at leaving the family home, but more memories of having lived in a house which suited us so well for those wonderful years.”

Let me conclude with a celebration of generosity and thoughtfulness. Essel Bailey and his wife, Menakka, recently gave $4 million to Wesleyan’s College of the Environment, their total gift to COE now being $7.5 million. Congratulations and thanks to Essel and Menakka for this gift to our students—this gift to our planet—that will serve both for generations to come.

Larry Carver |

P.O. Box 103, Rico, Colorado, 81332 | 512/478-8968

CLASS OF 1966 | 2017 | ISSUE 1

We celebrate the lives of three beloved classmates, William August Hauser, David Adams Berry, and Alton L. Flanders III. Bill died on October 21, 2016, in Ely, Minn.  “Pacifist, a lover, an artist, a writer, a linguist,” Bill, writes his good friend, Jeff Nilson, was “a wonderful man…one of he most talented people I have ever known. He sang in the glee club, played lacrosse, did quite well academically, spoke Spanish, learned how to speak Russian and German, and embraced everything he did with a glowing life force.”

Playwright and screenwriter best known for the play and film, The Whales of August, David did not graduate with our class, signing up for service in Viet Nam and basing his first successful play, G.R. Point, on that experience.  Alberto Ibarguen tells us: “My most vivid memory of [David]…was a letter from him in Viet Nam to me in the Amazon jungle, where I was a Peace Corps volunteer. He wrote in a clearly legible, firm script, until, according to his narrative, they took a shelling wherever he was and the writing, punctuated by a thumbprint in orange colored clay, became shaky. It gave me an inkling of what he was going through.” Bill Dietz has suggested to President Roth and to David’s executors that Wesleyan would be a fitting place for David’s papers.

Alton passed away on December 22, 2016. Often ill in his last years, Alton, a longtime resident of Nantucket, was a supporter of the Nantucket Cottage Hospital.

On September 8, Bill Boynton, joined by John Wilson and Gary GFierce” Conger, had the exhilarating experience of being at the Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral to watch the “launch of the OSIRIS-REx mission to rendezvous with a small asteroid named Bennu.” In this his 10th NASA mission, Bill’s role is “to plan the operation of the spacecraft and the operation of the instruments to get the data we need to collect the best sample.” These launches, Bill writes, “never get routine!”

Mr. “GFierce” has “after 40 years selling publishing services to large companies” chosen “art as my second career: traditional oil paintings on canvas of New York City skylines, Ohio and Vermont landscapes…I started painting at age 60 and have found it to be a wonderful way to be my own boss and be totally absorbed in the work.”  Do see his monthly Art Lovers Newsletter.

Tony Alibrio writes: “Not all that much to report,” an assessment with which I disagree, seeing that he spent the three weeks before Christmas at his home in Lakewood Ranch, Fla., before returning to his home in Connecticut to host “a table for 23: four sons with spouses, 12 grandchildren, and two relatives.” Tony is not keen on “Wes declaring itself as a ‘sanctuary campus…,’ my political bent probably the result of working since I was 12 and having to pay one-half of my education.” Tony reports that his brother and fellow classmate, Jim, is doing well.

Delighted to receive David Griffith’s biographical sketch for the class Reunion book; I remember an open field tackle he made against Williams, a thing of beauty.  “Wesleyan,” Dave writes, “for me is a priceless gift to the mind and memory,” a sentiment beautifully put and one I share.

Dan '66 and Diane Lang MAT'70
Dan ’66 and Diane Lang MAT’70

Clark Byam, who practices law in Pasadena, Calif., took his “three children with their significant others…together with my wife and her daughter and husband and grandchild (and my former wife)” to Sedona, Ariz, for Thanksgiving. While there, “both of my daughters became engaged so it was quite a Thanksgiving.” I’ll say! John Shaw writes that he has “completely retired, as has wife Connie, [and] have relocated to Southport, N.C.

With retirement also comes travel. Daniel Lang sent a photograph of him and his wife, Diane Lang MAT’70, standing on the Greenland ice cap this past June. “This was our third trip to the Canadian Arctic. We plan to go in another direction—Nepal—for our next trip.”

The peripatetic Rick Crootof and Linda have recently traveled to New York City, Los Angeles, and Sarasota; next stop, Buenos Aires followed by “a three-week cruise down to Antarctic and up to Valparaiso, Chile.”

I am honored to serve as class secretary, following Howard Brodsky, Irv Richter, and Hardy Spoehr. I took the position on two conditions: I don’t have to take bag-pipe lessons, appealing as that might be, and Hardy will agree to supply kukui nuts for the enlightenment I will need.  So far, so good.  Hardy has done such splendid job, his wonderfully detailed, humorous, inclusive account of our 50th Reunion being one of many examples. The Reunion had many highs, but my fondest memory will be from that last evening, the banquet in the Olin Library’s Campbell Reference Center, Hardy recognizing those Wesleyan students who had been serving us for three days with the gift a Kului lea. The room was absent of dry eyes. Thank you, Hardy. Classmates, let me hear from you. As Richard Wilbur reminds us: “We fray into the future, rarely wrought/Save in the tapestries of afterthought.”

P.S.  A number of us—Dave McNally, John Neff, Rick Crootof, Hardy Spoehr, and myself—are planning to attend our 51st Reunion this coming May, catching up with and cheering on our friends from the Class of 1967 who will be enjoying their 50th Reunion.  Please do attend, if you can.

Larry Carver |

P.O. Box 103, Rico, Colorado, 81332 | 512/478-8968

CLASS OF 1966 | 2016 | ISSUE 3

Aloha, dear friends and classmates!

As the glow of our 50th fades and the streaks of the dawning of our 51st (or at least our 55th!) begins on the horizon and the winter snows have encumbered some of us, we need to again acknowledge our fellow classmates Al Burman, Frank Burrows, Jack Knapp, John Neff, and Dick Stabnick for a great “50th Reunion Class Book Addendum,” which, once again, brought back heartfelt memories both of our past and ongoing relationships with one another and our school. Thank you, folks, for a great final chapter to our class book.

First, a big shoutout to our titular class leader, Rick Crootof, and his wife, Linda, who have been blessed by becoming grandparents with the stork’s arrival of Maddox Meyers Uhl. Rick noted about his grandson: “Our first grandchild, a boy, 6 lbs. 12 oz., was three weeks and a day earlier than expected, but all is well.” Congratulations to you and new parents, Martha and Keegan. At the same time, the Crootof family celebrated the graduation of son Matthew Crootof ’96 from Idaho State University’s physician’s assistant program. Matthew and his wife, Kami, plan to live in Bozeman, Mont., where Matthew will begin his practice.

It was great hearing from our classmate, Pete “Pedro” Spiller, a fellow canoer, who, in August along with his friend, Jon Berger (Middlebury ’68), finished a 22-day northern Ontario canoe expedition. He experienced “great challenges and a wonderful, delightful adventure, perhaps better suited for the young, but splendid opportunities to put what we learned over the years to good use. Exceptionally pretty country, end to end.” Pete went on to note that he began canoeing at age 11, “continuing on through the years at Wesleyan and Columbia.” Before beginning his professional career, he had completed a “60-day, 1,000-plus mile expedition ending at Hudson’s Bay,” a record none of us can match. It’s great that he is “back in the birch” (though now may be made of carbon fiber). Today, Pete noted that he is the chairman of the St. Augustine Lighthouse and Maritime Museum, a Smithsonian affiliate at our nation’s first port, and that “it’s accurate to say that he does ’lighthouse keeping’ as a volunteer and ’light housekeeping’ at home.”

A sad note was received about the passing of our classmate Michael Botein on Aug. 3, at his home in South Orange, N.J. While at Wesleyan, Michael was a member of Alpha Delt and majored in English. He was active at WESU and The Argus and participated in the Wesleyan Tutorial program. After Wesleyan, he earned his J.D. from Cornell University (1969), and an LLM (1972) and JSD (1979) from Columbia University. His professional career in law was centered on his being a professor at the New York Law School and the founder and director of the Media Center. “A scholar in telecommunications, cable television and regulation, he was the author of multiple treaties, casebooks, and articles, and shared his expertise as a Fulbright Senior Scholar and visiting professor in law schools around the world.” Donations to his memory can be made to the Michael Botein Memorial Scholarship Fund.

We received a great note from Clark Byam, who, after our Reunion, reacquainted himself with his pathways on the East Coast before returning to his home in LA with, side trips to Alaska and British Columbia. By the time you read this, Clark, we hope you will have made it out see us here in Hawaii as well.

We have another “Hall of Famer” amongst our classmates. Will Rhys wrote that the Cleveland Play House had selected him for induction into the Hall of Fame in September. The Play House is the oldest regional theater in the United States (100 years old last October). Congratulations, Will, on a well-deserved honor.

And now to our authors: The Rev. Paul Gilbert wrote a wonderful note that first explained his absence from our Reunion. He was “closing out” his illustrious career at the Grace Church Cathedral, but as we all know, physicians, lawyers, and priests never “retire.” Paul has assumed a new position as priest in charge of “a small congregation in Edisto, S.C.” His wife, Jan, continues to work as a lawyer and, by the time you read this, both he and Jan will have a fourth grandchild. Paul noted that he is “in the final stages” of editing the second edition of his book titled, The Marriage Quest. He concluded with noting, “There are a couple of more in the pipeline.” So, Paul, make sure you get these done, as we expect to see you at the 55th!

Phil Shaver has published two books this last summer, both of which were new editions of previous publications. The first, Handbook of Attachment: Theory, Research, and Clinical Applications, is considered “the bible” for the psychological study of emotional attachments (to children, parents, pets, lovers, etc.), while the second, Attachment in Adulthood: Structure, Dynamics, and Change, focuses on the human element of attachments. Phil finally notes humbly that this last September he received an honorary doctorate in the social sciences from Stockholm University in Sweden. He notes, “The ceremony required that I purchase white tie and tails, something I have never owned before.” What a great honor, Phil. We all celebrate with you.

And so, my fellow classmates on this high note, I say a hui hou (not goodbye, but “until our paths cross again”) as your class secretary. Thank you for your trust and sharings over the years—it’s been a wonderful ride. As with all things, however, it’s time for renewal and change, and I am so happy that this important task will be passed to our classmate, Larry Carver, who heard my kaleo (call) to all of you at our Reunion. Please pass along to him the wonderful happenings in your life that all of us continue to have. His contact information is:

Larry Carver |
2203 Bridle Path, Austin, Texas 78703 | 512/478-8968

A big mahalo, Larry. And finally, I need to recognize the wonderful work that Wesleyan’s alumni folks do for all of us. A particular thank you goes out to Cynthia Rockwell, Pam Vasiliou, and our current Office of Communications contact, Randi Plake. Thank you all. And so, my friends, there are only three things left to be said. The first is in that celebrated song by Bing Crosby and captured in the theme song of Chevy Chase’s Christmas Vacation: Mele Kalikimaka. The second is Hau`oli Makahiki Hou (Happy New Year). And the third is “See you at the 55th.”

Hardy Spoehr |
1833 Vancouver Place, Honolulu, Hawai’i, 96822 | 808/944 8601

CLASS OF 1966 | 2016 | ISSUE 2

May 27, 2016
Aloha, Dear Classmates,
“O ivied walls! O storied halls!
O shrine of long ago! (54 years ago)
The altar fires our fathers lit Shall still more brightly glow.”

And so they did for four short days in May for all of us from the class of ’66. I hope in some small way this column will capture for you, our class, not the specifics but the essence of what was, indeed, for me one of the more, if not the most, emotional, remarkable events that I have experienced in my life. In this effort I have borrowed occasionally from the poetic presentation style of our classmate, Sandy Van Kennen and ask for his forgiveness if it doesn’t adequately sum up the occasion.

At the head of this adventure was our class leadership under “General” Rick Crootof, whose vision and mission for us all was to play out over the four days; and to Dave McNally, his trusted sidekick. Thank you so much, Linda and Michelle, for letting your husbands lead us all in a wonderful adventure. In a statement to us all, those who were able to participate and those who were not, he reported post-Reunion:

“Seventy members of the Class of ’66 returned for a warm and loving 50th Reunion. The weather was glorious, and we had three excellent dinners too. Spirits and anticipation were high following the magnificent class book put together by Al Burman, Frank Burrows, Jack Knapp, John Neff, and Dick Stabnick, and sent to us all beforehand. For many, the highlight was a new feature, initiated last year by ’65, of ‘shorts,’ where about two dozen of us addressed the class about some meaningful aspect of our lives, often involving overcoming adversity. We had three of these sessions and could have gone on longer than the five hours we did devote.

“Saying goodbye on Saturday night (or Sunday morning) was hard at this stage of life, and hopefully, especially since attendees have no registration fees from now on, we can return more often than every five years.”

And so the adventure began…

Thursday, May 19th: Checking in at the Usdan University Center in the afternoon—Organized chaos; good spirits; food lines; laughter; joyous students anticipating graduating; older folks with wives, husbands, girlfriends, boyfriends, pet dogs; registering; housing assignments; Wes students handling all.

Then it was off to our first event—our Class Seminar—in which we heard the tale of ‘Paradise Lost’ in relation to the university’s endowment back in the last years of the last century. Great discussion by Jim Dresser ’63, Professor Karl Scheibe, and Wesleyan’s CIO Anne Martin. Despite the multitude of dollar reductions back then, my thoughts were on the positive side, for what are endowments for? And what did those dollars bring? Double class enrollment; women on campus; enhanced faculty; and great art, student, physical education, science facilities; good returns on investment. In my thinking, Wesleyan today is what it is because of those expenditures back then.

Then, off to reception and dinner at Patricelli ’92 Theater. And it was here that our Reunion really began. And it did so after a wonderful meal. Rick, working with Dave McNally, put together a series of “shorts” whereby our classmates were asked to share, and did they ever. We need to extend a special thank you to the inspirational Jeff Nilson, Will Rhys, Tom Broker, Jack Knapp, Bill Boynton, and Doug Robins, whose initial presentations and personal reflections set the tone for all of us over the next two days—heartfelt tears; support; laughter; spiritual; friendship; oneness with each other.

Then “bedtime”—off to Clark Hall. Joyce and I were blessed to have had wonderful floormates in our old dorm, which was actually called the “New Dormitory” until 1924, having been built in 1916 and named for John C. Clark, Wesleyan trustee (1910–1946) and former board president (1912–1920). On our floor were Sandy Shilepsky and his wife, Carol; fellow Hawaii classmate Gifford Lum and his wife, Audrey; Larry Carver; Sandy Van Kennen and I know there a few others to whom I apologize, as we passed in the bathroom sight unseen.

Friday, May 20th: The next day began with breakfast at the Highwaymen Common Room, Romance Languages and Literature Department—who knew this was EQV! More good “healthy” food. Dave McNally then got us started again with our sharing “shorts”—and our thanks to Wesleyan student Wesley Layug ’17 for loading flash drives and making it all work. It was a morning filled with great sharings from our classmates—wonder, laughter, tears, family, marriages, divorces, remarriages, redivorces, children, grandchildren, travels, food, art, music, health, and wellness.

Then off for a picnic lunch at Russell House—tents, laughter, buffet lines, students, alumni, kids, pets, sunshine.

The afternoon was spent by all having many different options; touring campus, reception for Sigma Nu and Kappa Nu Kappa members hosted by Gary Miller ’56 and our “General,” sessions in art, writing, social entrepreneurship, Korea, receptions for Alpha Delta Phi members, for former football team members, and the dedication of the new Boger Hall, named in honor of outgoing Board Chair Joshua Boger ’73.

Those of us from Chi Psi adjourned to the old Lodge, with John Driscoll ’62 in tow, for reminiscing and photo ops on the back steps.

Then on to another reception and dinner with President Michael Roth ’78 in Beckham Hall in the old Fayerweather Gym. (Just a note that this hall in named in honor of Edgar Beckham ’58 who was instrumental and an inspiration in the lives of many of us while at Wesleyan.) Great food blessed by our resident kahu (preacher) John Bensinger; warm; maile and orchid lei; exuberant, passionate president; floor walking; fraternities; Wesleyan Spirits; Alma Mater; Wesleyan Fight Song.

While it was bedtime for Clark Hallees, the night was just beginning for those who lodged in Cromwell. Led by Ted Zeller, Dave McNally, and Dave Putnam on guitars, the harmonious voices of Kit Laybourne, Rick Osofsky, Marc Kasky, Bob Dearth, Ken Mandelbaum, Bruce Cost and numerous others recaptured folk music, perhaps not heard since the ’60s, long into the night.

Saturday, May 21st: Up early, it was continental breakfast time at Olin Library’s Develin Room and, again, Dave McNally convened us all for another morning of concluding “shorts.”

More wonderful sharings, which concluded with Sterling Baker doing the wrap for this wonderful program of life shorts—in a record 90 seconds.

Adjourning, it was off to the Memorial Chapel to remember our dearly departed. In a heartfelt service, we fondly brought forth the remembrances of 28 of our classmates. The noted English film director and artist Banksy remarked: “They say you die twice. One time when you stop breathing and a second time, a bit later on, when somebody says your name for the last time.” The names of our departed classmates will always continue to be on our lips.

Then, with the carillon from South College sounding, all the Wesleyan classes gathered in front of the Usdan Center for the traditional Parade of Classes. The spirit of the Wes football team of ’65 overtook me and Steve Schaffer (attending with his wife, Sally, formerly from Middletown), and we undertook a photo in the picture booth with this old center (#53) snapping the ball to his quarterback (#14)—needless to say, there were no fumbles!

At 11:30 a.m. sharp, yours truly had the great honor of sounding “Trumpet Voluntaire” on the bagpipes as the signal to line up for the traditional university parade of classes. And, shortly thereafter, with much air in the bag, everyone stepped off to the sound of pipes in the lead, echoing the tunes of the “Wesleyan Fight Song,” “Ode to Joy,” “Blue Bells,” and “Men of Harlech” amongst the brownstone buildings of North College, South College, the chapel, and theater; down in front of the old Lodge and Alpha Delta; then along High Street to the intersection of College Street and then back to and ending at the Memorial Chapel. There, the sounds of the pipes were replaced with those of the Old Wes Brass Ensemble as all those who had made the trek from earliest to latest classes filed into the Memorial Chapel for the Annual Meeting of the Alumni Association.

Calling the Annual Meeting of the Alumni Association to order, Daphne Kwok ’84 led us all in celebrating the recognition and awarding of distinguished Alumni Awards, Outstanding Service Awards, and the James McConaughy Jr. Memorial Awards. We all extend our heartfelt aloha to two of our classmates; Essel Bailey Jr., who received the Distinguished Alumnus Award and Rick Crootof ,who received the Outstanding Service Award for well-deserved recognition—inspirational; moving; intergenerational interfacing.

Then it was picnic time under a huge tent erected on Andrus Field—students, alumni, Frisbees, band playing, sandwiches. And then off to WESeminars, where two of our own, Alberto Ibargüen and Donald Craven participated—Discerning Fact from Fiction; HIV/AIDs.

As the sun set over Foss Hill, it was again time to eat—our 50th Reunion Class Reception and Dinner—held in the Campbell Reference Center at Olin Library, and what a dinner it was! Our class kahu again blessed the food with plates full of sirloin steak, fish, or veggies and coupled with a wonderful dessert…again a food extravaganza! At the end of our meal, it was time to recognize those who had taken such good care of us over the past three days—Wesleyan students who had served as our waiters and servers who were, in every sense, our grandchildren and we, their grandparents. Rick greeted each one with a kukui lei and, giving them a hug, noted our thanks and gratitude to each one. They, in turn, presented to all of us alum kukui nut lei. The kukui nut is a symbol of enlightenment, as its kernel was used as a candle in ancient Hawai`i. Today, it symbolizes knowledge and the ongoing search for enlightenment.

Rick then noted our class mentors; Professors Jeanine Basinger, Erika Franklin-Fowler, Nat and Anne Greene, Rob Rosenthal, Karl Scheibe, and Don Russell. Unfortunately, all could not be with us in person but those who could not were certainly there in spirit.

Next, of particular importance, was recognizing the multitude of our class members who had graduated Phi Beta Kappa. This, indeed, is an impressive group of men who have in their professional lives made significant contributions to our world society, our country, our local communities, and to Wesleyan.

A wonderful recognition was then extended by Rick to all our classmates who have served our country through uniformed service, either in the military or the Public Health Service, including the Indian Health Service. There were 18 in our class attending the Reunion including David Boyle, Bill Dietz, John Ulcickas, and Bill Sargeant, with his inspirational career. It’s noteworthy that a total of 50 of our classmates have served in this regard.

It was then left to Essel Bailey Jr., our Class Gift Chair, to identify our class gift, which is in the form of a scholarship to Wesleyan. This is an ongoing gift and one to which we all need to donate—whether it’s one dollar or a million—participation is what matters. You can help others in 50 years experience what we now have—a oneness of class relationships within the Wesleyan family. So, whether you were able to join us at the Reunion or not, please make an effort to be in the spirit of our class and be a part of this giving.

As the evening drew to a close and after all the kudos had been extended, the glow of many remembrances remained—friendships, hugs; kisses; handshakes; no goodbyes—only “until we meet agains.”

And so we all departed as one—some taking in a last remembrance at the Wesleyan Spirits 35th Anniversary Concert in the Memorial Chapel—energy galore, harmonious voices, wonderful spirit.

Sunday, May 22nd: A final fling—brunch at the Usdan University Center—and what a brunch it was!—oatmeal, fruit, eggs, bacon, ham, pancakes, French toast, a moveable feast!

At this point, let me just insert some individuals not already mentioned but whom it was so good to see and with whom to renew friendships. I apologize to those not mentioned, as I know there were many to whom I did not have an opportunity to say hello: Howie Brodsky and his wife, Joan; Tom Broker and his wife, Louise Tsi Chow; Frank Burrows; Clark Byam and his wife, JaNelle; Ted Lilly; Hank Lufler Jr. and his partner, Michael Gerdes; Dave Putnam and his wife, Shirley; Irv Richter and his wife, Ann Marie; Phil Shaver and his wife, Gail Goodman; Bill Sigafoos and his wife, Lissa; Dick Stabnick and his wife, Cheryl; and Doug Werner and his wife, Pamela. At this point I also need to thank my wife, Joyce, who accompanied me and whose family is from Higganum. We married early in my Wesleyan career and had a memorable reception in the Lodge, so our Reunion brought back many happy memories of times past.

And so it was for those few magical days in May when we, as members of the Class of 1966, once again renewed our friendships. When Victor Butterfield noted that “if our years at Wesleyan were to be the best years in our life, then the university had failed”; what he didn’t say was that “if our years at Wesleyan were to produce sustaining friendships and wonderfully positive personal relationships which were to give us a sense of fulfillment then the university has certainly succeeded.” And so it has.

Purposely, we have saved a final thank you and last note of praise for the wonderful efforts of our University coordinator Pam Vasiliou. It was she who kept all the planning members and committees on track and who made sure the school was on board with everything that it needed to do to make our Reunion and the work of the committee a success. Pam, you have the enduring gratitude of, and eternal thanks from, all of us for all your work and wonderful efforts on our class’s behalf.

Some final kudos:

We need to recognize John Stremlau, who traveled the farthest to attend the Reunion, having made the trip from South Africa; and Dick Stabnick who made the shortest trip, having driven down from Hartford, Conn.;

We need to recognize Bruce Cost and his wife, Kavi Reddy ’01, who welcomed their young daughter, Coco, last year and who immediately had 70 “uncles” and untold number of “aunties” during the Reunion; and, finally, we need to give the “youth” award to Steve Schaffer, Hank Lufler, and Clark Byam, who look like they could immediately suit up for the Wesleyan football and swimming teams and make a difference.

And a final thought from Linda Wheeler in her Ain’t Life an Artichoke?, in which she noted: “Understand that happiness is not based in possessions, power or prestige, but on relationships with people you love and respect.” And so it is for our “General,” for his “trusted sidekick” and for all our classmates of ’66.

“We’ll all be young again together;

Life’s short—then fill with joy its span…”

And for four wonderful days in May we all certainly did. Thoroughly stoked; Go Wes! Mahalo.

Hardy Spoehr |

1833 Vancouver place, Honolulu, Hawai’i, 96822

808/944 8601

CLASS OF 1966 | 2016 | ISSUE 2

← 1965 | 1967 →

Aloha, all.

My fellow classmates…when you read this our 50th will be upon us. Our Reunion Committee under the able direction of Rick Crootof ( has worked extremely hard to make this experience a truly remarkable and wonderful event for all of us. Over the past months I have heard a number of reasons why some cannot come but, truly, if you have second thoughts because of expense or philosophical reasons, please reconsider. If finances are an issue, please contact Rick and if philosophy may cause barriers, please remember the Wesleyan of good times and academic vigor and the fact that we are all brothers in the ‘black and red’ Cardinal of our time.

Sadly, recently we received word of the passing of John E. Robinson, in June 2015. John and his wife, Judith (Morrissey), lived in Medfield, Mass. John grew up in Connecticut, majored in government, and was a member of Commons Club. A gentle and quiet man, John had a great reach at Wes: He participated on the track team, was a trusted member of the band, and was active in the school’s community tutorial, companion, and volunteer programs. After Wesleyan, John received his MBA from the University of Rochester and was a banker for the State Street Bank. Our thoughts and prayers go out to Judith and the children, Jonathan, Katie, and Meghan, and their families.

We are also saddened to report that we have received word of the passing of another of our classmates, Gary S. Chorba, on Jan. 17, 2015. Gary retired in 2004 after serving for 30 years as a supervisor with the State of New Jersey’s Division of Alcohol and Addiction Services. After Wesleyan he received his MA from Trenton State College and served in the US Army and saw action in Vietnam. At Wesleyan, Gary was a history major and member of Eclectic and gave voice to WESU. While at school, he received the Robert Rideout Award and was a Phi Beta Kappa. In his later life Gary was an avid fisherman and longtime soccer and lacrosse referee. We extend our aloha and condolences to his companion, Carol Czahur, and to his friend and former wife, Violet Harrison, and to his children and their families and grandchildren.

The month of February brought our fellow classmate Gifford Lum and his wife, Audrey, back home to Hawai`i. It was wonderful seeing them again, and we had some time to visit the Hawaiian double-hulled sailing canoes, Hikianalia and Hawai`iloa, and to listen to a performance of the Royal Hawaiian Band, the oldest municipal band in the nation, formed when Hawai`i was a kingdom under the reign of Kamehameha III in 1836.

Gifford reported: “After 33 years at the VA Boston Healthcare System in Boston, Mass., I retired on April 3, 2015, having served in the pathology and laboratory medicine service as associate chief of clinical pathology in charge of the blood bank and a state-of-the-art clinical chemistry laboratory. I also held an academic appointment as assistant professor of pathology at Harvard Medical School. I live with my wife of 40 years, Audrey, in Newton, Mass., and have two children, Elliot and Deirdre. Elliot graduated from Columbia and has an MBA from Sloan MIT School of Management. Deirdre graduated from Dartmouth, has an MD degree from UCSF, and is a gynecological laparoscopic surgeon and assistant clinical professor of obstetrics and gynecology at Stanford Medical School. Thank goodness they are now off the payroll!! In December 2013, we welcomed our first grandchildren, twins, Malia Lum Markman and Aaron Lum Markman, born at the Stanford Packard Hospital in Palo Alto. We try to visit California twice a year to see them.”

Gifford has shared some of the memories from our fellow Beta classmates, which we include online at

It is a great gift from the hand of providence that we all be able to gather again on our 50th to renew our friendships and stories—for it is from those stories that all of us find new life from the shared experiences of living.

E lei no kakou i ke aloha! (We wear our friendship as a wreath, i.e., the friendship of our classmates for each other!)

Hardy Spoehr |

1833 Vancouver place, honolulu, hawai’i, 96822

808/944 8601

CLASS OF 1966 | 2015 | ISSUE 3

Aloha, all. As we’ve moved well into the holiday season, let me simply wish that you all have found and continue to find beauty in this season and give thanks for the blessings we’ve all received and continue to receive throughout our lives.

In our past class notes we noted the sad passing of our classmate Robin Burns. His family had a memorial gathering for him on March 7th and our classmates Rick Crootof, Jack Knapp, and Bob Dannies were all able to attend, with Rick serving as one of the speakers. Robin’s wife, Rena, kindly provided us with the following information on Robin’s post-Wesleyan experiences:

“Robin graduated from Columbia School of Architecture and spent most of his career working for various agencies in the City of New York, including City Planning, the Office of Downtown Brooklyn Development, the Department of General Services and the Department of Design and Construction (DDC). He served for many years as chief architect of the parks department, overseeing the buildings in the city’s 200-plus parks. In the mid-’80s, he left public service to head the real estate development arm of the South Street Seaport Museum, at the time when the Rouse Corporation was transforming the seaport area into one of its ’festival marketplaces’ akin to its projects in Boston and Baltimore. In his final years back with the city at DDC, he was senior project manager for the new multi-building police academy going up in Queens and the city’s new backup 911 emergency call center.”

Rena went on to say, “Besides me, Robin left behind his daughter, Jenny Burns, and her husband, Geoff Sanoff, our two grandsons, Alexei (almost 8) and Jesse (5½), his brother Bruce, and his former wife and our dear friend, Judy Burns, and her wife Pat Magnuson. As I wrote in the New York Times obituary, he was a good man, taken too soon.”

Robin was a great believer in organ donation and was able to donate his eyes to enable two others to see, and so he lives on in perpetuating the lives of others. For those wishing to perpetuate Robin’s memory, the family asks that donations be made in his name to a new institute at the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Hospital dedicated to pancreatic cancer research. You can give online at:

On the Wesleyan front, our classmate Rick Crootof continues to be the busy bee around making our upcoming 50th a truly memorable and remarkable happening. The “Committee” now stands at 34 so, if size is any indication of excitement, there is really no excuse for any of you classmates and family and friends not attending. We welcome to our Reunion committee Art Clark, Barry Reder, and Phil Shaver. Our Reunion fundraising continues to grow and now stands at a little over $4.3 million with participation being in the mid-50 percent range. In the past we’ve done a credible job, but especially please consider participating this year if you haven’t done so in the past. The Class of 1960 has the all-time high participation record of 92 percent…we can certainly beat that if we all put our minds to it. Remember, it’s not so much the amount you are able to contribute, but rather that you do contribute in remembrance of our Wesleyan years and being able to perpetuate for those who have come after us the same wonderful memories that we all carry with us.

A Big Aloha (shout out!) to John Driscoll ’62, who has retired from Wesleyan (really?—I doubt it!) after 33 years of really wonderful and dedicated service. Our paths first crossed when I was just a young, unknowing freshman, newly arrived to my Foss Hill dorm room. My roommate, Bob Dearth, and I were just getting acquainted in that awkward way of first meetings and into our midst descended the recently graduated varsity quarterback and a huge senior lineman, John Driscoll ’62 and Red Erda ’63! As I recall, both of them quickly had our room filled to capacity with all us dorky freshmen from the floor, entranced by John practicing his preaching skills and Red showing off his physical stature. What a wonderful welcome it was to Wesleyan. Over the years our paths have continued to cross through alumni gatherings and John’s participation with the Freeman Asian Scholars Program—a more dedicated and fun person I have never known. At least, John, we still have Gina! All our love and aloha and, yes, there is a wonderful life after retirement. I can vouch for it. I believe we still have a ranch to visit on Hawai`i.

On the home front, Joyce and I welcomed our classmate Rick Osofsky and his wife, Jean, to our islands. Rick has a cousin living on the island of Hawai`i and had a chance to meet up with the family there after spending a number of days in Honolulu. Rick reports that all is well with Ronnybrook Farms and that his daughter, Kate Osofsky ’94, is well into managing the business. Rick noted that the farm has just opened a new shop in Manhattan, so anyone in the city or on your next visit to the city, stop in for the very best ice cream, yogurt, and/or milk you will ever taste. To find other Ronnybrook shops, visit the farm’s website, where you can also learn about the full complement of healthful Ronnybrook dairy products:

As a final holiday note, a response to the eternal question of—how do queens spend the holidays?

BOSTON, Dec. 27.-Liliuokalani, the Hawaiian Queen, took the first sleigh ride of her life today through Brookline. When she came back she said she had been perfectly comfortable and had enjoyed every minute. A covered sleigh, with glass front, was provided so that she could see everything and still not feel the wind. Her friends supplied piles of extra wraps, and one was so thoughtful as to procure a footstove which placed beneath the robes gave out an agreeable warmth.

Her Majesty’s attendants, Naholela and Heleluhe, suffered a great deal more from the cold than their mistress did, as they were in an open sleigh and not as warmly wrapped. They know as little of snow and cold weather as Liliuokalani does and everything interested them. (New York Times, Dec. 28, 1896)

The Queen was visiting the family of her late husband in Brookline, Mass. Hopefully, this winter all of your “sleigh rides” have been and continue to be a warm as the Queen’s.

Hardy Spoehr |

1833 Vancouver place, honolulu, hawai’i, 96822

CLASS OF 1966 | 2015 | ISSUE 2

Aloha, all.
By the time everyone reads this, summer will be a remembrance of the past. Hopefully, everyone has had their fill of “soda, and pretzels, and beer.”

This is late in coming, but first I want to recognize our classmate Bill Dietz, who has joined the ranks of our retired after a long and very distinguished career at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). I personally need to thank Bill for his helpful thoughts and advice to a diabetes program I was directing in Hawai`i a number of years ago…a big mahalo, Bill, and welcome to our ranks!

The big news for us is that our 50th is now well over the horizon! Our classmate Rick Crootof has been hard at work twisting elbows and peering in various neighborhoods to put together a great Reunion Committee. The committee is already beginning its work and includes: Rick and Dave McNally as our co-chairs; Jim AndrusEssel BaileyDavid BartlettDavid BoyleHoward BrodskyTom BrokerAl BurmanFrank BurrowsClark ByamGraham ColvilleGary CongerDonald CravenPat CurryBob Dannies, Bill Dietz, Jeffrey Evans, Steve GiddingsPaul GilbertAl IbargüenJohn KnappDavid LuftJim O`LearyJohn NeffIrv Richter, Sandy ShilepskyPete Spiller, yours truly, Sandy Van Kennen, and Dale Walker and Wes staff Pam Vasiliou, Mark Davis ’96, and Nicky Bennett. Thank you one and all for serving. Rick has notified us that Professor Rob Rosenthal has agreed to be one of our class guests and did a great seminar at our 30th Reunion comparing the top 10 songs of 1966 with those of 1996….Can you imagine what that comparison would look like now? Now it’s up to all ’66ers to do the right thing and to start planning now on attending next year’s gathering. Let’s make singing our old Wesleyan Fight Song at least one more time together a reality on the steps of North College…see you there! And maybe even the Douglas Cannon will show up for another appearance!

The Committee has already been at work and invited Don Russell to join us, and he has accepted. Speaking of sports…congratulations to the Wes baseball team and Coach Mark Woodworth ’94 in winning its second consecutive NESCAC championship, and a welcoming to Dan DiCenzo into the head football coaching position. Thank you, Mike Whalen ’83, for a great job and congratulations in your new athletic director positon.
A final note, and one more somber, is the concern I know we all have for the seemingly ongoing gun tragedies across our nation. This is not meant to be a political statement, I simply want to call to mind how we of the ’60s era at Wesleyan were all so privileged to have lived at a time which witnessed Wesleyan’s involvement in race relations bringing together us as students and Middletown youngsters in tutorial programs; serving as a hub for the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s efforts in the Middletown/Hartford area and evenings in the Foss Hill dining hall; sending its students to Washington, D.C., to march and to Tuskegee to learn. It also brought future Dean Edgar Beckham ’58 to Wesleyan, whose legacy on campus lives on through the Edgar Beckham Social Justice Award. Let us remember those days for, in many ways, they formed the glue which has cemented us as the class of ’66.

As with other Notes – a final Hawaiian `olelo:
Aia no ke ea i ka puka ihu: “There is breath still in the nostrils”—a reply when someone asks how a friend or relative is.

And so, ’66, our breaths live on!!!